Curb those Little Habits in your Puppy

They look up at you with those puppy-dog eyes, and they’ve just chewed through another pair of your shoes. Animal Rescue to the rescue!

Problem: crying at night

Solution: Puppies cry because they are unsure and unsettled. Crate training is a great way to support your puppy while settling in. Calming pheromones like Adaptil may also help. Ensure your puppy is comfortable with a plush snuggle toy and heat pad, as well as something with your scent on it. Be patient while they adjust to their new home.

Problem: toilet accidents

Solution: If your puppy has gone to the toilet in the wrong place, gently redirect them. Always give lots of praise and affection for using the right spot so they’ll learn where is acceptable. Puppy pads can be useful for when your puppy is not ready to venture outdoors.

Problem: chewing

Solution: Toys of different shapes, tastes and textures will distract your puppy from teething pain. Chase toys are good for interactive fun, and plush squeaky toys stimulate a variety of senses. Providing food regularly should help to prevent your puppy chewing on a shoe! If all else fails, chew deterrent sprays are available.

Problem: biting

Solution: Puppies have very sharp teeth! Mouthing is normal behaviour but if you find your puppy getting rough, redirect them onto a suitable toy. Don’t encourage your puppy to mouth your hands during games and play. If your puppy does nip you, any time you feel contact with your puppy’s teeth, make a high-pitched ‘yeow’ noise, to teach your pet that biting hurts and is not okay. If the behaviour continues make contact with a behaviourist for expert guidance.

Problem: humping

Solution: Even if you find humping amusing, good puppy care involves teaching your pet that it isn’t acceptable behaviour. Redirect your puppy into a more suitable behaviour (such as sit) and reward them. Repeat and reward often. Starting with training in the first few days of your puppy coming home will help to establish ground rules. Enrolling your new pet in Puppy Preschool will help them master early lessons and learn about the difference between good and unwanted behaviour.

Problem: fear of other dogs

Solution: In the first few months of their lives, puppies are learning to communicate and may find meeting other puppies and dogs intimidating. It’s important that they learn to socialise in a safe, controlled and positive environment. They will seek your guidance and they need to trust you – so be careful not to push them too far. If they are fearful, let them observe from a distance while you comfort them. At Puppy Preschool, your trainer will teach you about your dog’s body language so you know when they need a little extra support. In most cases, it easily helps puppies to adjust to their new family and become happy and confident. If they are older, you may need a behaviour specialist.